Here are key FAQs about D-backs' offseason

October 3rd, 2018

PHOENIX -- The offseason is underway for the D-backs and it figures to be one of their most interesting in recent years, with many decisions to be made about a team that won a Wild Card spot in 2017 but suffered a September swoon that cost them a second straight postseason berth in 2018.

Here's a look at some of the frequently asked questions as the D-backs begin to turn the page to 2019:

What direction will the D-backs go in? Will it be a full-on rebuild or all-in for 2019?

The first thing to remember is that it's not an either/or choice. The D-backs could decide to try and contend, but not go all in if that means trading away top prospects and pushing the payroll beyond what's reasonable.

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The other thing to keep in mind is that the team is still in the process of sorting through what happened in 2018; not until they have concluded their meetings and feel like they have some answers will they have a better idea on a direction for '19. That could run into early November while the team assesses the free agent and trade markets, and that could also impact which direction they go.

What will the payroll be next year?

The D-backs had a franchise-record Opening Day payroll this year. Whether it will go down or not remains to be seen, but here's how the process works: General manager Mike Hazen and his staff conduct their end-of-the-year meetings and then develop a proposed plan for 2019 with an estimate of how much it will cost. They then take their plan to ownership for their input and approval. Only then is a budget decided on.

Which players are free agents?

, , , , Jake Diekman, , , Jeff Mathis, A.J. Pollock, and .

Will any be brought back?

Yes. I think it would make a lot of sense for them to bring back Buchholz, Descalso and Mathis. I think they'll find that Pollock and Corbin will be out of their price range. Ziegler pitched very well for the D-backs and they might attempt to bring him back, but as of Sunday afternoon's season finale, he was unsure whether he would play in 2019 or retire.

Which players are eligible for salary arbitration?

, Nick Ahmed, Brad Boxberger, , , , T.J. McFarland, , John Ryan Murphy, Chris Owings, , Robbie Ray, Steven Souza Jr. and .

Any of them non-tender candidates?

Potentially Miller and Owings.

What is the deadline to tender players contracts?

November 20.

Which players have contract options?

The D-backs hold a club option on for $14.5 million, which they will pick up. has a player option for 2019-20 that he will exercise that is worth $15.5 million next year and $17 million in 2020.

Will they try to sign Goldschmidt to a contract extension?

If they do, chances are we won't know about it. Goldschmidt has maintained absolute silence when it comes to his contract, and in deference to him the D-backs have also not said anything. It would seem to make sense that, at some point between now and the end of next season, they would at least have a conversation about an extension.

Would they trade Goldschmidt?

I would be surprised if that happened, but it would not surprise me if you hear rumors this offseason about teams inquiring about what it would take to pry Goldschmidt away, because for the first time since in his career, I think the organization might be willing to at least listen.